I accidentally left my iPod in my car a few days ago, in plain view, not realizing until shortly before lunch. I found myself considering what my options would be for replacing it if someone had stolen it (fortunately, it was sitting right where I left it), and thought of a couple of options:
iPod Classic. In essence, just upgrading to the current version of the same player. From what I can tell, Apple only sells one size these days, the 120GB model, for $250 — more or less what I paid for my 30 GB model two years ago.
iPod Touch. This would also give me web at wifi hotspots and all the apps from the iPhone marketplace. Downside: I’d have to spend $400 to get the 32GB model. And I already have a G1 with web and all the apps from the Android marketplace — and it works in wifi hotspots and on the cellular network. Also, I use my iPod a lot in the car, and a touchscreen isn’t the best interface if you can’t actually look at the controls.
Just use the G1 and get a bigger memory card for it. The G1 has a decent music player built in. The downsides: I’d need to remember to carry around the USB-to-headphone adapter. I’m not sure they make 32 GB micro-sd cards yet (and even the 16GB ones are expensive, plus they’d have to share with photos, app data, digital comics, etc.), so I’d have to pick and choose music. Also, I don’t think it reads AAC files, so I’d have to re-rip any CDs that I imported into iTunes. And of course re-purchase anything that was bought through iTunes. Then there’s the matter of rebuilding all the playlists… Never let it be said that Apple doesn’t take advantage of vendor lock-in.
Get a second-hand iPod. I can find a 30GB or bigger iPod Classic for close to $50 on eBay — comparable to a 16 GB microSD card.
If it came down to it, I’d probably end up going for the second-hand iPod. While the brand-new iPod Classic has its appeal, it would be hard to justify spending 5x the money when I’m not likely to use the extra capacity.